Europe's Heartland Cruise
Cruise pricing from as low as $1599!
SAVE $700-850 off Amawaterways Brochure Price
Fully Escorted Travel Insider Tour
A gorgeous cruise at a wonderful time of year with warm
weather, long days, and lots of beautiful sights and
Enjoy a wonderful cruise along
the picturesque Mosel and Rhine rivers in Germany,
with wonderful shore touring each day to beautiful old towns and cities.
Maybe you've cruised on a
gigantic cruise ship before. A river cruise is very different.
The custom built (brand new this year - 2009) river cruiser, Amalyra, has only 75 cabins,
making for a much more personal and less institutional
The river cruise itinerary is
also very different to a traditional ocean cruise. You
never have rough seas, and you're always treated to beautiful
views out your cabin window, never just empty ocean.
Take advantage of the weak
Euro, and this wonderful bargain priced cruise and enjoy a
wonderful vacation at the best time of year.
skip down to the booking form
You should leave the US on
or before Sunday June 28, so as to arrive into Trier,
Germany's oldest city, on or
before Monday June 29. You board the ship on Monday
afternoon, June 29.
If you choose Amawaterways' three
night pre-cruise option in Paris, you should leave the US
on/before 25 June, to arrive into Paris on 26 June.
And if you choose to do your
own thing, travel to Europe as and when it suits you. If
helpful we can arrange a tour/transfer from Paris to
Trier on Monday June 29.
The cruise ends in Nuremberg on the morning of
Monday July 6.
At this point you're free to either fly home (probably choosing
to fly from either Nuremberg or Munich), or to extend your
stay as you wish. Amawaterways offer an extension that would
take you on to Prague that day, and spend two nights there
before flying home on Wednesday July 8 (or continuing your
European experience as you choose).
Many people choose to arrive into
Europe a day before the
start of the cruise. This means if you - or your luggage -
should miss a connecting flight, or if anything else goes wrong,
you still have a day up your sleeve before the start of the
It also gives you a day to
'de-jetlag' before the cruise gets underway.
If you wanted to arrive a
day early, you could either spend a night in Trier, or perhaps a
night in Paris then take the tour/transfer on Monday June 29 to
the ship in Trier (including sightseeing in Luxembourg en
Europe's Heartland Cruise - Detailed Day by Day Itinerary
Click this image to have a larger map open in a new window
After an optional pre-cruise extension in Paris, travel via
Luxembourg to start this cruise in Trier, Germany's oldest
Cruise along the Mosel and Rhine
rivers, then at the conclusion of the cruise in Nuremberg,
consider also the optional extension on to Prague.
Click here for a
detailed day by day itinerary of this lovely cruise vacation.
Your Special Savings
This is truly a great deal to tempt
you over to Europe this summer, with the 'perfect storm' of
savings! Take advantage of the
cheap Euro, low air fares, and this tremendous cruising deal.
Plus, there's another chance
to save for some of you. If
you've traveled with Amawaterways (formerly known as Amadeus
Waterways) before, you'll get another $100 per person past
passenger discount. Let us know if you've sailed with them
before in the comments section of the booking form, below.
About the Cruise/Tour
Like a traditional cruise,
this is a fully meal inclusive cruise, and - better than a
traditional cruise - it includes a generous amount of shore
touring as well. You won't have to pay extra for your
shore touring when visiting the lovely towns and cities as you
cruise through Germany.
The cruise of course
includes three great meals a day, plus various other snacks,
on-board entertainment, as well as generous opportunities to
sightsee, both from the boat as it cruises the river, and while
ashore during the many stops. You typically have time to
participate in a provided tour and also to sightsee and
shop on your own.
A nice extra feature is free
wine, beer, or soda provided with all dinners on board. And,
talking about free - you have free internet access too.
Every room has its own computer screen and keyboard, which you
can use for the internet as well as for access to the ship's
movie library, bridge cam, GPS, and lots more.
While all meals are available on the vessel, you'll also be able
to experience other dining opportunities ashore if you wish.
Similarly, the on-board entertainment can be supplemented with
visits to clubs, bars and shows ashore - the vessel
will sometimes stay in port until late at night, allowing you a chance to
experience towns by day and by night.
Because the ship carries a maximum of 150
passengers, you have a chance to actually get to know other people on board and
to create new friendships. Most people on these cruises
seem to be variously middle aged and older.
Travel Insider Extra Features
You'll be traveling as a
member of the Travel Insider group, with the group hosted/escorted
by David Rowell personally.
David will be on-call 24/7
to help you with any issues or challenges any way he
can, and will add value to your travel experience and its
Being a Travel Insider makes
you a VIP client of Amawaterways, and while all Amawaterways
passengers get excellent service, you'll get even better service
In addition, David will be
hosting two exclusive Travel Insider receptions on the cruise,
giving you more opportunities to relax and enjoy the fellowship
of traveling with a group of like minded travelers.
Why River Cruising
River cruising is simply and
absolutely the most comfortable and convenient way to travel
around Europe. You can unpack your bags and get
comfortable in your lovely large cabin and not need to repack or
transfer until the end of the cruise - this in itself is
probably all the convincing you'll need!
In addition, European towns
have historically tended to be centered around the major rivers,
and so river cruising is a great way to get to the lovely
historic parts of Europe, at a sedate speed, and in luxurious
How else could you travel
around Europe? On a bus tour? Yuck! By train
or car - yes, but then you have an abundance of travel hassles
I've experienced every
possible type of travel, and I'm a 100% convert. River
cruising is the best way to see Europe. Try it,
and you'll be sure to agree.
Why Cruise in June?
Experienced travelers know
the best time to travel is always either side of the peak
periods. Late spring is a glorious time of
year, and you're getting the longest possible days (the summer
solstice (longest day)
is 22 June) combined with the best possible weather - long warm
sunny days, prior to the sometimes stifling heat of mid-summer
in central Europe, while beating the worst of the summer crush
of people and high travel costs.
The weather should be
comfortably warm during the days, with temperatures ranging up
into the low/mid 70s, and cooling down in the evenings.
There may be a little rain (average total rainfall for the month
in the regions we visit is about 2.7").
About the Amalyra
The cruise ship for this
brand new. Its maiden voyage is scheduled for 23 March 2009.
It is custom designed to meet the special
needs of the European river system, enabling it to operate in less favorable
conditions than many of the other boats (ie when the water
levels are 'too high' or 'too low').
The boat is long but narrow.
It is 360' long and 37.4' wide, and cruises at 15.6 mph.
This might seem like a slow speed, but it is faster than many of
the other cruise boats, enabling the boat to get between towns
faster and giving you more time sightseeing.
Dining is single-seating and
with no pre-assigned tables, so you can move about as you wish
from meal to meal. Amawaterways even provide a generous amount
wine (or beer) with your evening meal each night.
Smoking is restricted to the
outside Sun Deck only.
The cruise has been marketed
primarily to English speaking people and the language
on board is exclusively English. This means you won't have the
inconvenience of having to listen to every announcement being
repeated in four or five different languages, and you can
conveniently talk to your fellow guests (and likely soon to be
new friends) on board.
Cabins on the Amalyra
are comparatively large and spacious compared to other cruise boats - a massive 170 sq ft each.
The cruise is offered in
five cabin grades plus there are four suites as well.
There are 71 cabins and four suites on
three decks, and all are well equipped with a/c, bathroom and
shower, phone, flat screen television, free internet access,
hairdryer and safe. The television has both local and
satellite channels, a bridge-cam channel, and an evening
All five grades of cabin are
very similar in terms of size and amenities. The main
difference is the deck the cabins are situated on and the
picture clearly shows the three accommodation decks on
Amalyra. The top deck and the middle deck have floor
to ceiling sliding doors and 'French balconies' (a very small
space outside the sliding door), but the lower deck just has
These French balconies, and the panoramic views from them, are
wonderful, especially on a warm day in late June/early July such
as you'll hopefully enjoy.
The most important
difference though is not the style of window, but rather the
height above the waterline. There is a big difference in
perspective and view between the top deck (suites and A category
cabins) and the middle deck (B and C category cabins), while on
the lowest deck (D and E category cabins) the floor is actually
below the waterline and your windows and eye level is only a
foot or so above the waterline. On this deck, with even
the slightest amount of bank on the sides of the river, you'll
not see anything other than the water and bank from the bottom
deck, and there may be a bit more water and machinery noise on
that level too.
When moored, if your cabin
is on the dockside rather than the outboard side, the lowest
deck cabins will have a view blocked by the dock, the middle
deck cabins may have a limited view, and the top deck cabins
will usually have a view above the dock level.
These differences are much
more profound than in a massive cruise ship where even the
lowest deck is still a long way above the waterline. Of
course, if you do choose a D or E category cabin, you can spend
the days in the public areas and enjoy the views from there, but
if you can justify the extra cost to go up a deck or two, the
chances are you'll be very pleased you did.
Suites are 255 sq ft, cabins
are 170 sq ft.
Tip : Choose the
least expensive cabin type on the deck you'd rather be on.
There is very little added value in choosing a D cabin in favor of an E
cabin, or a B cabin in favor of a C cabin.
Amawaterways is a relatively new company, founded by
their President Rudi Schreiner in 2003, who formerly started the
river cruising operation for Uniworld, and who then founded
Viking River Cruises before now creating this latest company.
He has taken his experience and knowledge of both what is good
and bad about other river cruises and built a high quality
company that is quickly setting the new high standard for river
cruising in Europe.
I've spoken with Rudi at length, and we know many of the same
people in the travel industry, and I am very comfortable endorsing his
company and his tours.
Per person pricing for the
cruise is as follows :
Special Travel Insider Cruise Rate
E (normally $2299)
Sorry - now sold out
$1599 - save $700
D (normally $2448)
Sorry - now sold out
$1738 - save $710
C (normally $2748)
Sorry - now sold out
$1998 - save $750
B (normally $2898)
Sorry - now sold out
$2098 - save $800
A (normally $2998)
$2198 - save $800
Jr Suite (normally
Sorry - now
$2948 - save $850
Extras and Inclusions
Port Taxes are $98 per
The Paris add-on (three
nights) is $660, the Prague add-on (two nights) is $440.
Single supplement is
currently being renegotiated for
the cruise (ask
to be updated when this is resolved), and is $360 for the Paris option and $240 for the
Amadeus operates a limited
number of 'guaranteed share' spaces where they'll either
match you up with a fellow passenger of the same gender or
allow you to travel with no single supplement. We (The
Travel Insider) can also attempt to match you up with
another single traveler too.
If you just want the
tour/transfer between Paris and Trier, that is $130 per
person. You'd need to be at the Paris Republique Crown
Plaza Hotel at 7.30am to join the transfer/tour.
You can pay for your tour using a
credit card with no credit card surcharge.
Because we are now within
three months of sailing, full payment is required as soon as
your booking request is confirmed.
skip down to the booking form
What about the Air Fare?
We can help you find a good
airfare, and there'd be no extra charge for our services.
You can also do this yourself - we generally use
www.kayak.com to shop for the
We can also have
Amawaterways arrange air for you, but with the wealth of deals
out there, the contract rates they have available are seldom as
good as what you can find yourself.
We'll be pleased to answer
any questions you might have about arranging your air
transportation, of course.
Which cities to fly in and out
Trier - Germany's oldest
city - is very small and doesn't have its own airport. The
nearest major airport is Luxembourg, which is just under 30
miles away (ie simply take a taxi or shuttle bus to Trier from the Luxembourg
You'll probably find most
flight choices, and best value, if you fly in to Frankfurt.
This is further away (about 135 miles) and the best way to
travel from Frankfurt to Trier is by train. It is about a
3 hr train journey, and costs around €30 (about $38) for
There are other airports as
close or closer than Frankfurt (eg Bonn) which you could
consider as well.
One other option is to fly
in to Paris, or in some other way, make your way to Paris, and
then take advantage of the sightseeing transfer/tour from Paris
to Trier on the Monday morning, June 29. This includes a
stop in Luxembourg en route. This transfer/tour is $130
For returning home again, if
you wish to fly directly home from Nuremberg, you could either
fly from Nuremberg or take a train to Munich and fly from there
(you might find a broader range of cheaper flights from Munich).
It is a mere hour by fast train between the two cities and again
costs about €30 for a pre-purchased ticket.
If you're traveling on to
glorious Prague, your best choice is to fly home from Prague.
It is a good airport with lots of flight choices, and not very
close to a 'better' airport.
Need More Information?
If you've a question or need
more clarification, go ahead and ask. Click for
Chat Help (if we're online) or
send us an email, or feel free to call us at (206)337-2317.
We generally recommend you
should protect against the various types of losses that may
occur while traveling.
Amawaterways offer a
policy that covers you for trip cancellation and interruption
costs, medical costs, trip delay, and baggage delay or loss.
This is $229 per person. The premium is payable with your
To add an extra trip
cancellation premium that will allow you to cancel for any
reason at all, add another $40. With this add-on premium,
if you cancel for a reason not covered by the main policy,
Amawaterways will refund you as much of your payment as is covered by
their usual policy, and give you a voucher to be redeemed
against future travel any time in the next year for the balance.
for a new page with more information on the Amawaterways travel
How to Extend or Vary this Tour
There are many ways you can
extend or vary this tour. You're of course free to add anything
you like, before or after the cruise. Alternatively, if
you prefer, the cruise is a complete experience in itself
without needing any extra time.
We recommend you consider
arriving into Europe at least a day before the cruise starts, so
as to give yourself a day to resolve any problems that may occur
such as missing/delayed flights or losing luggage.
If you have more questions, please don't hesitate to ask.
We're here to help ensure your experience is as good as
The Amawaterways offered
optional pre-cruise three night Paris package and two night
Prague package are both very popular. But if you've been
to Paris several times before, you might prefer to make your own
arrangements there and simply take the tour/transfer via
Luxembourg to join the tour on Monday 29 June.
Tour Terms and Conditions
standard terms and conditions
apply to this tour.
In addition, please note
these extra terms :
1. The 90 day
payment due date is considered to be Wednesday March 25, 2009.
In other words, payment is due once your booking is confirmed.
2. US citizens require a
current passport that will not expire for at least six months
after the date of their planned return back to the US in order
to be admitted to Europe. They do not require any European visas. Citizens of other countries should check with the
airline that will transport them to Europe to determine what
passport and visa requirements may apply.
3. Tour price is
subject to change prior to full payment being received.
4. Terms and
conditions of the cruise line (Amawaterways) also apply.
The Travel Insider is
licensed by the State of Washington as a seller of travel -
registration number 602 036 247.
19 Feb 2009, last update
28 May 2011